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Health and safety in the workplace is an extremely important issue that cannot be ignored. There are government regulations in place to ensure minimum standards but it is up to the employers to not only meet those requirements but to exceed them, making the workplace safe for all staff.
It is important from a legal and financial aspect but any injuries or health issues at work could also lead to a loss of staff morale and lead to a decline in productivity. In extreme cases, it will also have a negative effect on staff retention.
Make sure you are familiar with the legal requirements prescribed for your industry and company size and make sure you adhere to those. Then, let us take a look at 5 ways to ensure your employees are safe in the office.
- Train Your Employees
It is essential that you provide the correct training for all employees on health and safety issues. This is particularly important where there are dangers or potential risks in the workplace. Ensure the training is attended as well as understood and continuously monitor that employees are sticking to the rules. Give all staff written safety guidelines that they can refer to at any time. If anything changes in the work environment, retraining will be required.
Neglecting to train your staff will not only put them in danger but could also have serious consequences for you as the employer should an accident occur. It is also extremely bad for staff morale if one of their colleagues is injured.
- Have A Safety Plan in Place
Just as you do with budgets and marketing, you need to create a plan for safety in the workplace. You need to be aware of any hazards or dangers, identify them and take action to reduce any risk they may pose. A detailed plan must be drawn up; including the people responsible in the event of an emergency and the plan must be communicated to all staff. It is essential to have proper safety equipment available, where necessary as well as a first aid kit.
- Conduct Regular Inspections
It is important to check all machinery, tools and safety equipment on a regular basis. They need to be clean, in good working order and safe to operate. Look at storage facilities and observe staff activity to see that it is being conducted in a safe manner. From time to time, check with staff member to ensure they are aware of the correct safety procedures and rules. Remember to check all fire doors, emergency exits and fire fighting equipment.
Look at sites such as the Thermostat Center for vital information.
- Discuss Safety Issues with Staff
Schedule regular meeting with employees specifically to address health and safety matters. Try to get regular feedback from them as to any concerns they may have as well as any potentially dangerous aspects you might not be aware of.
- Investigate All Incidents
Irrespective of how serious it was, always do a full investigation after any incident. It is vital that you understand the cause and take action to ensure it does not happen again.
- Keep Records
Maintain accurate, complete records of any and all incidents that may occur. This includes training provided, inspections, first aid treatment and incident or injury investigations. Analyse this data to see if there are any specific patterns that might be a cause for concern. There are checklists and logbooks available online that you can use for reference.
- Include Safety a Key Part of Your Business
Although most business focus on sales or production, safety can never be neglected. It is just as important as the other aspects of your business and needs to be treated as such. You biggest asset in any business is your people and it is your responsibility to ensure their safety.
Legal safety requirements are the bare minimum that is required to ensure the well-being of your staff. To have a happy, well-motivated workforce it is highly recommended that you go the extra mile and provide high safety standards in all aspects of your business.